Blue Origin will perform a high-altitude abort test at 10AM ET

Blue Origin pushed the rocket to its limits during this test.

Wednesday morning, Blue Origin launched a capsule-carrying New Shepard rocket from its facility in West Texas.

Today's mission marked the ninth flight test for the New Shepard spaceship, and the third up-and-down round trip for the same capsule and booster. The rocket and crew capsule system is aimed at the suborbital tourism market, allowing paying customers to enjoy into a few minutes of zero-G flight prior to a parachute-assisted landing.

"Anything could have happened today, and this is the best possible outcome", launch commentator Ariane Cornell said.

So far, Blue Origin has completed eight test flights from its takeoff point in Texas.

Although Blue Origin is yet to provide details, it is understood the company has already purchased the first landing ship for returning New Glenn boosters.

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Another payload offered an unusual synergy with another part of Blue Origin.

The launch included a number of different scientific instruments, medical items, and testing materials, along with Blue Origin's "Fly My Stuff" program, where the company's employees send their own materials into space.

This was the third trip to space for both this New Shepherd rocket booster and the crew capsule, both created to be reusable like SpaceX's Falcon 9 booster and Dragon capsules. "It's coming", she said.

Blue Origin tested the motor at a lower altitude during a memorable flight back in October 2016, but the company's engineers wanted to make sure that the system would work as well at a higher altitude, where the atmosphere thins out to near-nothingness. The rocket performed a "high altitude escape motor test", the company said on Twitter, simulating a high-altitude emergency scenario by igniting the escape booster on the bottom of the passenger, or in this case, payload capsule. The hardware used in previous tests has been retired and put on exhibit at Blue Origin's Florida rocket factory, where the orbital-class New Glenn rocket will be built. That first crewed flight could take place before the end of the year.

Blue Origin has yet to announce when it will start taking reservations or how much flights will cost.

Claims in the media - which haven't been verified by Blue Origin - note Jeff Bezos's company is going to charge between $200,000 and $300,000 per ticket for the short suborbital flight.

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